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Old 31 July 2009, 09:44   #11
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Country: Canada
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Thanks to all for some very sound advice. I found a manufacturer who is shipping out a new one for a much better price. I love the "Zodiac" quality but it sure comes with a price when doing any repairs/replacement.

I'll post the results when I receive the new keel, along with a review of the company that is providing it.

Cheers
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Old 31 July 2009, 10:51   #12
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Originally Posted by smokeeater341 View Post
Thanks to all for some very sound advice. I found a manufacturer who is shipping out a new one for a much better price. I love the "Zodiac" quality but it sure comes with a price when doing any repairs/replacement.

I'll post the results when I receive the new keel, along with a review of the company that is providing it.

Cheers
Who it is and how much you piad?
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Old 01 August 2009, 08:11   #13
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Air Keel

Don't bother to replace it. Go to Morrison's/ Asda, etc and buy 3 swim tubes @3 each. Then gaffa tape them together to the thickness you need. You can use a breadknife to taper the front and back, and there you have it. It worked for me. They weigh next to nothing and will coil up to put in the boot.
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Old 01 August 2009, 10:21   #14
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Originally Posted by raymillard View Post
Don't bother to replace it. Go to Morrison's/ Asda, etc and buy 3 swim tubes @3 each. Then gaffa tape them together to the thickness you need. You can use a breadknife to taper the front and back, and there you have it. It worked for me. They weigh next to nothing and will coil up to put in the boot.
I love hearing about Morrisons and Asda's as my Aunt, who I visit yearly, lives in Ellesmere Port. I ordered one from a company named Aqua Marine Boats in Richmond B.C. for $100.00 shipped. It's a little bit longer than the original but it should still fit in the hull. If not, I will cut it down and re-glue one end. The only reason I'm reluctant to name the replacement company is that I don't want to send out the message that it's a good replacement until I receive it and put it to the test. Once I have undergone sea trials and if the product is as advertised I will give a full write up on my experience and whether this company/product is reputable enough to recommend. Thus far, communications with them have been great, specs and photos were provided accordingly and it looks like a worthy replacement....we'll see

The pool noodle idea is one I will keep for future reference as it sounds viable as well. I also thought about filling the old one with those styrofoam beads that fill bean bag chairs. I can buy them in my local craft store and although I won't be able to deflate/empty the keel, it will offer the flexibility that I need without the stiff rigidity of expanding foam. Has anyone done the expansion foam? What are your experiences? I fear that once filled and rigid, it would just break up into dust as soon as you put it under load. How would one fill it? In layers? Or all in one go, put the floor boards in and let it set in the needed position?

I appreciate all the positive feedback I have received and look forward to hearing and sharing other experiences with SIB's.

They're certainly a lot more suitable to my storage needs and on-water requirements, than my previous Bombard RIB (which I loved, did a lot of modifications to and got a lot of use out of)

Keep the ideas coming!

Cheers
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Old 01 August 2009, 10:36   #15
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100.00 is a good price, even for something like this of "so-so" quality. I'd take this for 100.00 any day over something tha is 1000.00 but "superb" It will be easier to repair in the long run, then something old, but original. Most of the companies make airdeck and keel of PVC, so it should not be a problem fixing in case of a puncture. I just saw that you're in Toronto as well, you can always PM me if you need a piece of PVC, as I have some at my house.

Just out of curiosity, can you post few pics of your motor (in the thread its OK), I want to see what kind it is, and may be sometime in the future we can get together and ride boats on the lake Ontario or Simcoe.
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Old 01 August 2009, 10:37   #16
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Air keel

I would imagine that if you filled the air keel with expanding foam/polystyrene beads then it would be difficult to fit the floor to the boat.
On our Zodiac 285s you have to fit the floorboards then get into the boat and stand on the last two to get them to fit in.
The air keel is inflated after this.
With a keel already fitted and "inflated" I'm not sure how you would do it.....it takes quite a bit of pressure to get the last two floor sections in.
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Old 01 August 2009, 10:46   #17
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With a keel already fitted and "inflated" I'm not sure how you would do it.....it takes quite a bit of pressure to get the last two floor sections in.
That's my concern!

Quote:
Originally Posted by oujakov
Just out of curiosity, can you post few pics of your motor (in the thread its OK), I want to see what kind it is, and may be sometime in the future we can get together and ride boats on the lake Ontario or Simcoe.
Sounds good!

I'll post up some pics when I get back in later today. The motor is a simple 2 thumper, single carbed Johnson but the compression is solid and it runs well.

Cheers
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Old 15 August 2009, 12:04   #18
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Latest follow up:

I installed the new air keel which came in as promised on time. Communications with Aquamarine were excellent and customer service was second to none.

The keel I ordered was 11" longer the OEM but I knew that upon purchase. Being anxious to see if the rest of the vessel was up to par, I filled 'er up to leak test it immediately. The first issue I ran into was the HR valve started to leak around the seat of the valve where it is fastened through the PVC of the keel. I used the supplied air fitting (My tube valves are the old style Zodiac ones that you rotate to fill each tube individually) to try and rotate the entire valve tighter until I found a spot that it seated reasonably well and held air. I'm not sure if there is supposed to be and "O" ring between the valve and the PVC (as there is none). What are the prescribed ways of tightening an HR valve if both ends of the keel are sealed and you can't access the inner ring?

It finally seemed to be holding air, so I folded over the excess amount, duct taped it in place (placing the folded end under the floor rather than against the hull) and re-installed the flooring. The valve was centred properly in the floor opening and the keel was sitting well in the hull. I proceeded to fill it up again and it seemed to be holding air sufficiently. On sea trials, the keel held up quite well considering the fold. There was no noticable shifting between the hull and floor and it was only after going through some rougher waters that the keel started to loose air. The SIB cut through the water really well and got up on plane quickly.

All in all I am impressed with the replacement keel although I now have to remove it again, figure out how to tighten the HR valve properly so that it holds air at all times and cut and re-glue the stern end of it so that it fits without having to fold it.

Questions that I have other than the valve are: Can I glue a PVC backed "D" ring onto a hypalon tube? Is it just a matter of using the right cement? Is MEK the prep cleaner of choice for hypalon and further to that, will it adversely affect the bond with a PVC "D" ring?

The last question is for raymillard. If I use the "pool noodle" method as a back up keel, would you suggest trying to fit it into the old keel? By that I mean, should I split the old keel open, fill it with the shaped pool noodles and then reseal the keel in order to maintain shape and protection?

All suggestions are greatly appreciated. I will post pics of the SIB as well as the replacement keel later today.

Thanks to all.
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